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Hire an Apprentice

Apprenticeships offer a chance for employers to recruit keen and dynamic new employees that want to learn and develop careers. Recruitment is quite often free with the training provider partner providing this service.

Apprentice recruits often come straight from school or college keen to impress and able to learn very quickly but with the new apprenticeship funding reforms due to take place in the spring of 2017 apprentice recruits will be of all ages and could be adults looking to switch careers or return to work.

WTPN member organisations have successfully been recruiting and training Apprentices for years and have all the services in place to help you succeed in finding the best candidates for your organisation and turning them into effective and loyal employees.

If you would like to speak to an expert from any one (or more) of our members then please follow this link to the appropriate sectors and their profiles, and they can guide you every step of the way.

We have also included here some basic understanding of Apprenticeships and helpful step by step guidance of things to research and discuss which can help you with the process.

What are apprenticeships?
An apprenticeship is a way for young people and adult learners to earn while they learn in a real job, gaining a real qualification and a real future. Hiring apprentices helps businesses to grow their own talent by developing a motivated, skilled and qualified workforce.

Recruiting an Apprentice can add value to your business in many ways,

  • Apprenticeships help businesses to grow
    The national apprenticeship service website states that 96% of employers that take on an apprentice report benefits to their business and 72% of businesses report improved productivity as a result of employing an apprentice.

  • Apprenticeships develop a motivated, skilled and qualified workforce.
    Businesses that offer apprenticeships think that they help with their long-term development. According to the British Chambers of Commerce, businesses usually employ an apprentice to improve the skills available within their organisation.

  • Apprenticeships improve productivity while reducing costs.
    Apprenticeships are boosting productivity by helping businesses to expand the skills available in the organisation. The average person completing an apprenticeship increases productivity by £214 a week. These gains include increased profits, lower prices and better products.

How long do they take?
Depending on the sector and job role, an apprenticeship can take anything between one and five years to complete. It is a package of training and qualifications. Apprentices will be carrying out the tasks associated with their job role adding value to your organisation and spend some time learning and developing new skills to improve their performance.

Types and levels of apprenticeships
Apprenticeships are available in a wide range of industry sectors with employers from large national companies to smaller local companies. They are available at intermediate, advanced, higher and degree level, covering more than 170 industries and 1,500 job roles, from advertising to youth work via environmental engineering and nuclear decommissioning.

Most of the training is on-the-job at an employer's premises, working with a mentor to learn job specific skills in the workplace.

Off-the-job training is provided by a training organisation (sometimes referred to as a training provider) and may be delivered in the workplace or through day or block release at premises away from the working environment. We have also have an excellent guide here from the National Apprenticeship Service for employers with useful templates ( person spec, job spec, interview questions) to help you through some elements of the recruitment process.


  • Decide on the job you want your apprentice to do or which area in the company they will work in

  • Plan your finances, How much do you want to pay them?  Taking on an apprentice is good value for money and it is possible to receive a government grant to cover the costs of training. The national minimum wage for an apprentice per hour depends on age, although many employers choose to pay a higher rate.

  • Check you're eligible for a grant and apply. The West of England Local Enterprise Partnership has employer Grants of between £1500 and £2500 (subject to criteria) available through our members, here are the details of the AGE Grant

  • Prepare for your apprentice deciding how you want to train them.  While you may want to deliver training in-house, many businesses choose to outsource the delivery of training to a local training provider. Your chosen provider will work with you to develop a tailored training programme to ensure your apprentice gets the best start in their career with you.  There are different apprentice frameworks and levels of apprenticeships and this training element may cost, so you could meet with a few providers before committing.

  • Organise someone within your organisation who will mentor the Apprentice

  • Organise your job spec and contact one of our members who can assist you with recruitment.

  • You can use an apprenticeship training agency if you want to employ an apprentice without the responsibility for running the apprenticeship scheme.

  • Select your apprentice and make an apprenticeship agreement with them. Your training provider or college can help you with an Apprenticeship agreement

Choosing a training provider or college to help you:

Most employers work in partnership with training providers or colleges to deliver their apprenticeship programme. A college or training provider (WTPN member) will help you:

  • identify the right apprenticeship for your business requirements

  • recruit an apprentice. They will guide you through the process and do most of the recruiting for you free of charge, you just need to interview and select the best candidate

  • advise you on funding and grants available

  • develop a training plan which reflects the apprentice’s and your needs

  • review and test the progress of an apprentice and provide feedback

  • provide training to support the apprentice with off-the-job learning and the knowledge elements of the programme

You should think about including some or all of this content in your apprenticeship, your chosen training provider or college can assist you with this planning:

  • on-the-job coaching and learning

  • off-the-job learning

  • employer induction and training

  • online learning and support

  • workbooks

  • projects

  • mentoring and line management support

  • specific training for individuals


Further information and guidance for employers is here and please make contact if you wish to speak to a member organisation

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